Undergraduate Courses

Faculty Section Numbers

  • Linda Aldoory (1501)
  • Lindsey B. Anderson (4901)
  • Julie S. Gowin (2601)
  • Dale Hample (3801)
  • Kathleen E. Kendall (2301)
  • Sahar Khamis (3701)
  • Brooke Fisher Liu (4101)
  • Nicholas Joyce (4801)
  • Kristy Maddux (3601)
  • Xiaoli Nan (4001)
  • Jade Olson (4701)
  • Shawn J. Parry-Giles (1401)
  • Trevor Parry-Giles (0301)
  • Anita Atwell Seate (4301)
  • Erich Sommerfeldt (4201)
  • Elizabeth Toth (2801)
  • Leah Waks (0601)
  • Andrew D. Wolvin (1001)
  • Michelle Murray Yang (4601)

COMM 100 Foundations of Communication (3)

Not open to students who have completed COMM 107. Credit will be granted for only one of the following: COMM 100 or COMM 107. Prerequisite for advanced speech courses. A study of oral communication principles, including verbal and nonverbal language, listening, group dynamics, and public speaking. Emphasis in this course is upon the application of these principles to contemporary problems and upon the preparation of different types of oral discourse.

COMM 107 Communication: Principles and Practice (3)

Credit will be granted for only one of the following: COMM 100, COMM 107, COMM200, ENES143, INAG110, JOUR130 or THET285. A study of and practice in oral communication including principles of interviewing, group discussion, listening, informative briefings, and persuasive speeches.

COMM 125 Introduction to Interpersonal Communication (3)

Concepts of interpersonal communication including perception, language and meaning, nonverbal communication, listening and feedback.

COMM 170 Foundations of Listening (3)

Role, process, and levels of listening behavior and the development of listening skills.

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COMM 200 Critical Thinking and Speaking (3)

Theory and practice of persuasive discourse analysis and composition. Research techniques, logical and rhetorical conceptions of argument, and technical principles for persuading in public venues.

COMM 201 Introduction to Public Relations (3)

Basic concepts and principles of public relations. Roles in organizations and society; history; skills and practices of public relations; theories and models of effective and ethical public relations. 

COMM 220 Small Group Discussion (3)

Principles, methods and types of interaction occurring in small groups with an emphasis on group discussion and decision-making.

COMM 230 Argumentation and Debate (3)

A study of the fundamental principles of reasoning, analysis, and evidence preparation of debate briefs and presentation of standard academic debate.

COMM 250 Introduction to Communication Inquiry (3)

An introduction to the field of communication. Definitions, models, and contexts of communication; rhetorical theory and rhetorical criticism of discourse.

COMM 288 Communication Internship (1-6)

Prerequisite: permission of the department. Repeatable to 6 credits if content differs. An individual experience arranged by the student with the instructor. Does not satisfy communication major requirements. 45 hours of supervised internship per credit hour with communication professional. Not a substitute for COMM386.

COMM 298 Selected Topics in Communication (3)

Repeatable to 6 credits if content differs. Special topical study of contemporary issues in communication.

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COMM 324 Communication and Gender (3)

The creation of images of male and female, and masculine and feminine, through communication, the differences in male and female communication behaviors and styles, and the implications of those images and styles for male-female transactions.

COMM 330 Argumentation and Public Policy (3)

Contemporary theories of argumentation with special emphasis on methods of formulating and critiquing public policy argument.

COMM 331 News Writing and Reporting for Public Relations (3)

Prerequisite: COMM201; and must have completed or be concurrently enrolled in JOUR181. Restriction: Must be in Communication program; and (sophomore standing; or junior standing). Or permission of ARHU-Communication department. Credit only granted for: JOUR201, COMM231, or COMM331. Formerly: COMM231. Writing and researching news and information media for public relations; laboratory in news-gathering tools and writing techniques for public relations. 

COMM 332 News Editing for Public Relations (3)

Prerequisite: Minimum grade of C- in COMM331; or students who have taken courses with comparable content may contact the department. And permission of ARHU-Communication department. Restriction: Must be in Communication program. Credit only granted for: JOUR202, COMM232, or COMM332. Formerly: COMM232. Copy editing, graphic principles and processes, news and information technologies for public relations.  

COMM 340 Communicating the Narrative (3)

The role of narratives in communicating messages and development of strategies to effectively communicate the narrative form through storytelling, oral reading, and anecdotes.

COMM 350 Public Relations Theory (3)

Prerequisite: Grade C- or better in JOUR 201 or COMM 250; or permission of department. Not open to students who have completed JOUR 330. Credit will be granted for only one of the following: COMM 350 or COMM 430 or JOUR 330 or JOUR 530. The historical development and contemporary status of public relations in business, government, associations and other organizations. Application of communication theory and social science methods to the research, planning, communication and evaluation aspects of the public relations process.

COMM 351 Public Relations Techniques (3)

Prerequisite: COMM332. Restriction: Must be in Communication program. Credit only granted for: COMM351 or JOUR331. Formerly: JOUR331. The techniques of public relations, including news releases, publications and printed materials, audio-visual techniques, speeches and special events. Application of these techniques in laboratory and field projects. 

COMM 352 Specialized Writing in Public Relations (3)

Prerequisite: COMM 351. Public Relations writing for science, technology, health, medicine, corporate finance, educational policy, law and government in broadcast and technical media, as well as newspapers and magazines and also including proposals, speeches and correspondence.

COMM 353 New Media Writing for Public Relations (3) 

Prerequisite: Minimum grade of C- in COMM351. Restriction: Must be in Communication program. Credit only granted for: COMM352 or COMM353. Formerly: COMM352. Students learn the uses and influence of new media on public relations practice and expand their ability to write using new and traditional media platforms and tools 

COMM 354 Public Relations Programs (3)

Prerequisite: COMM 350.

Analysis of eight major programs typically carried out by public relations professionals: employee relations, media relations, financial relations, member relations, governmental relations, community relations, fundraising and dealing with activist publics.

COMM 360 The Rhetoric of Black America (3)

An historical-critical survey of the rhetoric of Black Americans from the colonial period to the present.

COMM 370 Mediated Communication (3)

Prerequisite: COMM 250. Junior standing Analysis and critique of structure, performance, content, effects, and future of mediated communication.

COMM 371 Communication and Digital Media (3)

Restriction: Must be in Communication program. Credit only granted for: COMM371 or COMM398V. Formerly: COMM398V. A basic introduction to communication in the digital age. Through class lectures, assignments and projects, students will learn to effectively use new media for the purpose of strategic message creation and management used in the field of communication. Students will apply the basics of visual layout skills and the principles of visual design to create messages using words and images. 

COMM 372 Communication, Meaning, and Digital Media (3)

Restriction: Must be in Communication program. An exploration of visual communication and meaning creation. A theoretical and practical application of communication concepts and techniques in the production of visual content.
COMM 373 Communication and Digital Visual Narrative (3)
Restriction: Must be in Communication program. Examination of the traditional style of visual communication, its practices and theoretical underpinnings juxtaposed against contemporary digital media aesthetics and techniques. Utilizing a variety of communication skills and new media tools, students will plan, write, shoot, edit, and upload digital visual narratives.
COMM 374 Communicating Visually: Message Production and Digital Media (3)
Restriction: Must be in Communication program at Shady Grove. Focus on the interplay between technology, images and sound in the creation of digital content. This is a communication process by which a digital visual message evolves from conception to completion, incorporating the creative, financial and marketing tools. Students will conceive, plan, recruit and supervise digital video projects, developing a familiarity with production management technique and execution.
COMM 375 Documentary Theory and Practice (3)
Restriction: Must be in Communication program. A historical and theoretical introduction to documentary films and videos. Students will explore the power of documentaries to address socially significant issues.
COMM 376 Communication through Advocacy Short Film (3)
Restriction: Must be in Communication program. Explores the theory and practice of contemporary communication and advocacy short form video. 
COMM 382 Essentials of Intercultural Communication (3)
Credit only granted for: COMM382 or COMM482. Introduction of major theories and concepts of intercultural communication; examination of processes that make up cultural differences; and use of intercultural communication competence skills. 
COMM 383 Urban Communication (3)
A study of communication variations in the urban setting with emphasis on communication problems encountered in ethnic relations. Strategies for improving communication.
COMM 385 Influence (3)
Explores contemporary theories of influence and their implications for communication practice. Topics include power and influence, logical theory, rhetorical theory, persuasion theory, framing theory, social influence theory, and propagation of influence in mediated social networks. 
COMM 386 Supervised Internship (3-6)
Prerequisite: Permission of department. For communication majors only. Supervised internship experience with communication professionals. Relation of academic training to professional experience.
COMM 388 Communication Practicum (1-3)
COMM 398 Selected Topics in Communication (3)
Repeatable to 6 credits if content differs. Topical study of contemporary issues in speech communication.
COMM 399 Honors Thesis (3)
Nine hours of laboratory per week. Prerequisite: permission of department. For communication majors only. Repeatable to 6 credits if content differs.

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Junior/Senior/Graduate Curriculum

Courses numbered 400 and above are open to juniors, seniors, and graduate students.

COMM 400 Research Methods in Communication (3 credits)

Prerequisite: COMM250 and an introductory course in statistics. For COMM majors only. Philosophy of scientific method; role of theory; research ethics; empirical research methods (measurement, sampling, design, analysis).

COMM 401 Interpreting Strategic Discourse (3 credits)

Prerequisite: COMM250. For COMM majors only. Principles and approaches for practical analysis of discourse designed to shape audience opinion.

COMM 402 Communication Theory and Process (3 credits)

Prerequisite: COMM250. For COMM majors only. Philosophical and conceptual analysis of communication theories.

COMM 420 Theories of Group Discussion (3 credits)

Current theory, research and techniques regarding small group process, group dynamics, leadership and decision-making.

COMM 421 Communicating Leadership (3)

Not open to students who have completed COMM498L. Examines the nature of leadership, theories of leadership from a communication perspective, relationships between leadership, authority, power, and ethics. Explores leadership responsibilities, commitments, and actions.

COMM 422 Communication Management (3 credits)

Communication policies, plans, channels, and practices in the management of the communication function in organizations.

COMM 423 Communication Processes in Conferences (3 credits)

Group participation in conferences, methods of problem solving, semantic aspects of language, and the function of conferences in business, industry and government settings.

COMM 424 Communication in Complex Organizations (3 credits)

Structure and function of communication within organizations: organizational climate and culture, information flow, networks and role relationships.

COMM 425 Negotiation and Conflict Management (3 credits)

Role of communication in shaping negotiation and conflict processes and outcomes.

COMM 426 Conflict Management (3 credits)

Recommended: COMM425, COMM250, and COMM402. Role of communication in managing conflict processes.

COMM 427 Crisis Communication (3 credits)

Explores theories and research related to communication before, during, and after a crisis. Students examine the fundamentals of organizational communication, crisis management, and strategic and crisis communication planning before examining case studies of a number of real-life crises: organizational crises, natural disasters, accidents, terrorism incidents, health crises, and major crises of credibility. 

COMM 430 Public Relations Theory and Techniques (3 credits)

Prerequisite: JOUR201 or equivalent; and permission of department. Not open to students who have completed COMM350. Credit will be granted for only one of the following: COMM350 or COMM430.

COMM430, COMM630, JOUR530 and JOUR630. Formerly JOUR 530.

Theories relevant to the strategic management of public relations and techniques used in programs to communicate with publics of organizations

COMM 435 Theories of Interpersonal Communication (3 credits)

Prerequisite: COMM400 or permission of department. Major theoretical approaches and research trends in the study of interpersonal communication.

COMM 436 Interpersonal Arguing (3 credits) 

Prerequisite: COMM400 and COMM250. Restriction: Must be in Communication program. Credit only granted for: COMM436 or COMM498I. Formerly: COMM498I. An examination of face to face arguing. 

COMM 450 Ancient and Medieval Rhetorical Theory (3 credits)

Prerequisite: COMM250. For COMM majors only. Credit will be granted for only one of the following: COMM450, or COMM650. A survey of rhetorical theory in the ancient and medieval periods. Emphasis is placed on the theoretical problems that gave rise to its development within both periods. Authors include Isocrates, Plato, Aristotle, Cicero, Quintilian, Hermogenes, Martianus Capella, Aurelius Augustine, Alberic of Monte Cassino, Geoffrey of Vinsauf and Robert of Basevorn.

COMM 451 Renaissance & Modern Rhetoric Theory (3 credits)

Formerly: SPCH451/COMM651. A survey of rhetorical theory in the renaissance and modern periods. Emphasis is placed on the theoretical trends that dominate rhetorical thinking during both periods--especially in Great Britain. Authors include Wilson, Sherry, Rainolde, Day, Hyperius, Cox, Ramus, Talon, Bacon, Pascal, Fenelon, Sheridan, Campbell, Blair, and Whately.

COMM 453 The Power of Discourse in American Life (3 credits)

The potential of language forms and strategic discourse to create, perpetuate, and alter patterns of political and cultural behavior. The influence of contemporary political and cultural discourse on public understanding, public policy, and day-to-day life.

COMM 454 Rhetoric of the 1960s (3)

Prerequisite: COMM401 or permission of department. Not open to students who have completed COMM453 (Spring 2003). Study of key rhetoric of the 1960s. Treats rhetoric of relevant Presidents and several protest movements including civil rights, anti-war, and women's liberation. Contrasts traditional modes of argument with alternative rhetorical forms.

COMM 455 Speechwriting (3 credits)

The study of message strategies in order to research and develop effective speech texts appropriate to speakers and their audiences in various public contexts.

COMM 458 Seminar in Political Communication (3 credits)

Prerequisite: COMM250. Repeatable to 06 credits if content differs. The examination of special topics for and theories of political communication.

COMM 460 Public Life in American Communities, 1634-1900 (3 credits)

Ways that Americans have used their voice to create public life. Focus is on the diverse social communities that have characterized American life and the place and characteristics of oral discourse in each.

COMM 461 Voices of Public Leadership in the Twentieth Century (3 credits)

Study of the use of speaking in the power struggles of the twentieth century. Focus is on important speakers of the century, their social and policy influence, and the struggle to expand the diversity of voices with power in the public sphere.

COMM 468 Seminar in Mediated Communication (3 credits)

Prerequisites: COMM/JOUR350 or COMM402 or COMM450. Junior standing. Repeatable to 06 credits if content differs. The examination of special topics related to the study of mediated communication.

COMM 469 The Discourse of Social Movements (3 credits)

Recommended: COMM401. Junior standing. Repeatable to 06 credits if content differs. Study of key social movements that have influenced American social and political life. In alternate years the Civil Rights Movement and the Rhetoric of Women's Suffrage and Abolitionism. Consideration of how groups excluded from or marginalized in American political life affect social change.

COMM 470 Listening (3 credits)

The principles of listening behavior.

COMM 471 Public Communication Campaigns (3 credits)

Prerequisite: COMM200 or permission of department. Diffusion theory and its implications for public communication campaigns.

COMM 472 Nonverbal Communication (3 credits)

Nonverbal communication in human interaction theory and research on proxemics, kinesics and paralanguage as expression of relationship, affect and orientation within and across cultures.

COMM 475 Persuasion (3 credits)

Bases of persuasion, with emphasis on recent experimental developments in persuasion.

COMM 476 Language, Communication, and Action (3 credits)

The nature of communication as symbolic action. Topics include language, meaning, intention, understanding, and consequences of communication.

COMM 477 Discourse Analysis (3 credits)

Concepts of textual and discourse analysis applied to speech situations.

COMM 478 Communication Colloquium (1 credits)

Repeatable to 04 credits if content differs. Current trends and issues in the field of communication, stressing recent research methods. Recommended for senior and graduate student majors and minors in communication.

COMM 482 Intercultural Communication (3 credits)

The major variables of communication in an intercultural context: cultural, racial and national differences; stereotypes; values; cultural assumptions; and verbal and nonverbal channels.

COMM 483 Senior Seminar in Public Relations (3 credits)

Prerequisite: COMM351 and COMM400. Not open to students who have completed JOUR483. Credit will be granted for only one of the following: COMM483 or JOUR483. Formerly JOUR 483. Integration of theory, techniques and research methods into the planning and execution of public relations campaigns for specific organizations. Analysis of research on the case studies of public relations.

COMM 488 Communication Portfolio Project (1 credits)

Senior standing. For COMM majors only. Repeatable to 03 credits if content differs. Preparation of the professional communication portfolio.

COMM 489 Topical Research (1-3 credits)

Prerequisite: permission of department. Repeatable to 06 credits if content differs. Individualized research projects conducted with a faculty sponsor.

COMM 498 Seminar (3 credits)

Prerequisite: permission of instructor. Senior standing. Present-day communication research.

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